Henry Butler is a four-time W.C. Handy Best Blues Instrumentalist - Piano award nominee. His music is a rich amalgam of jazz, Caribbean, classical, pop, blues, and rhythm and blues influences, as eclectic as that of his New Orleans birthplace. Although blinded by glaucoma since birth, Butler is also a world class photographer whose work has been displayed at exhibitions throughout the United States.
Mastering baritone horn, valve trombone, drums, and the piano at the Louisiana State School for the Blind in Baton Rouge as a youngster, Butler began formal vocal training in the 11th grade. He went on to sing German lieder, French and Italian art songs, and operatic arias at Southern and Michigan State Universities, earning a masters degree in vocal music. He has taught music workshops throughout the country and initiated a number of different educational projects, including a residential jazz camp at the Missouri State School for the blind and a program for blind and visually impaired students at the University of New Orleans.
Butler received National Endowment for the Arts grants to study with keyboard players George Duke, Cannonball Adderly’s Quintet, and the late Sir Roland Hanna. He also studied with Harold Mabern, pianist for the late Lee Morgan, and with Professor Longhair.
Since releasing Blues After Sunset in 1998, he has been immersed in New Orleans music and the blues. His all electric, blues-rock album, The Game Has Just Begun, was released in 2002, and his latest album, Homeland, was released in April 2004.